Nets Bury National School Board Group Saying Sorry for Terror Smear, NBC Lies About CRT

On Friday night, National School Boards Associations (NSBA), a late apology was made for language used to link domestic parents with concerned parents. But all three networks from Friday to Monday morning ignored the organization retreating, “We regret the …. letter and we apologize to NSBA. There was no justification for some of the language included in the letter.” 

The original letter in question claimed that some actions by parents “could be the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes.” On the weekend morning and evening newscasts, as well as Monday, the apology went unmentioned. NBC’sToday on Sunday, however, offered a new hit piece on parents, falsely claiming that Critical Race Theory is not in schools and also blaming the whole thing on “former Tea Partiers.” 

The segment features a NBC reporter Antonia Hylton smeared concerned parents as just ex-Tea Party nuts: “But when you peel back what’s actually happening, what you often find that there are really well organized, often conservative groups, people with connections to former Tea Partiers, to Trump administration allies, who are really galvanizing parents around these issues.” 

She also falsely claimed, “It’s not taught in public schools, but some conservative activists and parents have turned it into a catch-all for diversity programs and lessons about racism they say could make white students feel guilt.” 

That’s patently untrue. Here’s just one example: A Buffalo school district in February told students that “all white people play a part in perpetuating systemic racism.” Call it CRT or something else, but this is clearly being taught in schools. 

The smear job on NBC’s Today was sponsored by Stanley Steemer and Colgate. You can click on these links to tell them what you think. 

Below is a transcript. Click “expand” to read more. 

Today
10/24/2021

WILLIE Geist: On last week’s Brevard County Florida School Board meeting, Willie Geist spoke about the threats that she received from activists and parents over supporting school masks.

Jennifer Jenkins reported and the police verified harassment, stalking, a false call to child service from a person accusing Jenkins’ young daughter of being abused. Jenkins was quickly cleared. Although passionate parents have always stood up for their children at school board meetings and rallied them, this situation is worse. What’s the secret to our success? NBC’s Antonia Hylton has our “Sunday Focus.”

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You say that I’m divisive? You’re divisive.

ANTONIA HYLTON – Once asleepy, predictable events

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is illegal.

HYLTON — School board elections and school board meetings across the nation are becoming increasingly political lightning rods.

JENNIFER JENKINS (Brevard County Florida school board member): No, they are not following me around in a vehicle. I reject them saying that they’re coming for me, that they’re — that I need to beg for mercy. I reject that when they are using their First Amendment rights on public property, they’re also going behind my home and brandishing their weapons to my neighbors.

HYLTON. Jennifer Jenkins (Brevard County Florida School Board Member) went viral sharing her personal experience.

JENKINS – This is a calculated political move that aims to get voters engaged with fear and other tactics.

HYLTON – Johnson County (Kansas) and Williamson County (Tennessee) are all in national news after enduring, violent threats made against school board members. Parents in Virginia and Michigan filed suit this week against the Department of Justice, alleging that it suppressed free speech through similar threats. Masking became politicized at both the national and local level after COVID.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My grandmother died of COVID because someone wasn’t wearing a mask.

HYLTON: And in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, fights over critical race theory. An advanced study on the relationships between racism and the law. It’s not taught in public schools, but some conservative activists and parents have turned it into a catch-all for diversity programs and lessons about racism they say could make white students feel guilt.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE : This is discrimination that I believe has been culturally sanctioned.

HYLTON Cecelia Woods is Oklahoma’s only female black superintendent. An e-mail was sent by a conservative PAC to raise concerns about critical race theory not being taught in her district. It warned supporters that if these types of superintendents, school boards, and teachers continue to dictate the education curriculum for our children there will be no future.

HYLTON, What are you seeing happen to the Superintendent?

MILO WILSON, Millwood Public School Board Vice President: All the insane questions you could ask about racism. She’s been asked.

HYLTON (voiceover). PAC leaders say that focusing on school boards can be one of the best ways to get real people.

PAUL MARTINO (Back to School PAC founder): I said, look, that’s not good enough for our kids, my kids included. Let’s go do something about that.

HYLTON (voiceover): Frustrated by his children’s school remaining virtual, Paul Martino, launched a PAC, Back to School in P.A., and pledged $500,000 to school board members that run on a platform focused on keeping schools open.

MARTINO: If people on the other team have an opposing point of view and they want to empower parents like we’re doing on a different issue, please join the party.

CROWD: We have no need for masks.

HYLTON (voiceover). Turning these heated local battles into indicators of the bigger political landscape.

JONES

GEIST: Antonia is joining me in the studio. Hello Antonia! It’s great to see you.
So, you’ve been covering these meetings for months and months now very closely. What seems to be driving this from parents, because there’s also a lot of outside influence, there’s money coming into some of these races?

HYLTON: That’s right. There’s several layers here.

I mean, first, there are two issues that are really the center of all of this, and that’s COVID protocols masking and then, critical race theory, this national fight that we’re seeing popup everywhere over how to talk about American history, racism and diversity in schools. But when you peel back what’s actually happening, what you often find that there are really well organized, often conservative groups, people with connections to former Tea Partiers, to Trump administration allies, who are really galvanizing parents around these issues.

And that’s a really key transition that we’re seeing here, because these are formerly nonpartisan seats. Schools boards are meant to be dull. You don’t want to see your city council member in the media every day. But now, people are looking at them in a new light where they are seeing them as a space where they can have serious cultural and political influence, and that’s going to have an effect on communities and on future elections.

GEIST: You have to admire anybody who serves on a school board right now, it’s such a difficult job because, as you say, back when we were growing up, it was sort of a routine gathering of the communities.

HYLTON – Not anymore.

GEIST: It’s a little bit scary and things are changing. Antonia, thank you so much. Thank you for the great report. It was great to meet you.

HYLTON: We are grateful.

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